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Which do you hear, 'Yanny' or 'Laurel?' Bellingham prankster picks a side in debate

A Twitter post by Abby Wright show that a Bellingham prankster took sides in the great Yanny-Laurel audible-debate on social media by covering up the "Laurel" on a sign at Laurel Park and renaming it "Yanny Park."
A Twitter post by Abby Wright show that a Bellingham prankster took sides in the great Yanny-Laurel audible-debate on social media by covering up the "Laurel" on a sign at Laurel Park and renaming it "Yanny Park." Courtesy to The Bellingham Herald

Red State or Blue State? Pro Choice or Pro Life? Gun Control or Gun Rights? Alternative Energy or Fossil Fuels? Stand for the National Anthem or kneel? Designated hitter or let pitchers hit for themselves? UW or WSU?

Sure, all good debates, but they pale in comparison to the contentious issue Americans have grappled with for the past week — which do you hear, Yanny or Laurel?

Social media has been riveted by the Yanny-Laurel Audible War. Families have been split, dinners preempted, bar room brawls started, college parties stopped, dogs and cats turned against each other — all because some people hear "Yanny" and others hear "Laurel" in the ear-tickling audible version of an optical illusion circulating on the internet.

One Bellingham prankster evidently drew a line in the sand — the City of Subdued Excitement is Yanny territory.

If you hear "Laurel," you might as well pack your bags and head elsewhere. We don't even have room for Laurel Park, anymore.

According to a Twitter post by Abby Wright on Monday, someone covered up the "Laurel" on the sign at Laurel Park and renamed it "Yanny Park."

So is Bellingham — or is this prankster — right or wrong?

According to a story on cbsnews.com, 47 percent of people hear "Yanny" and the remaining 53 percent hear "Laurel."

Oh well, Bellingham's never been known to follow the crowd.

The debate reportedly started when a Georgia High School student Katie Hetzel was studying the word "laurel" for a literature course and looked the word up on Vocabulary.com.

"I thought I was losing it," Hetzel told cbsnews.com. "I clicked the audio button to tell me a word to spell and I hear 'Yanny' and I was like, this isn't one of my vocabulary words."

She posted her findings to Instagram, and — as all great viral social media posts tend to do — it spread to nearly every phone, tablet and laptop in the country. And just like that, one of the country's greatest debates was on.

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